Critical Commentary


As you might recall, I am Valerie's biggest fan. "I remember myself before you..." was the line that did me in--2+ years ago! Break a leg and best of luck with everything, and thank you for keeping me in the loop.

Yours in poetry and performance,

James B. Nicola

To Valerie A. Szarek:

I'm reading your poem:  "Dear Congress" to light the chalice tomorrow at the First Unitarian Society of Denver. So bold and breathtaking..

Tina Proctor

I got a lot of oral response (Yes! Now! ) from the "Dear Congress"  poem and several people asked me for copies. I will send them the link for The Colorado Independent Newspaper. I also posted link on my Facebook page.

Tina Proctor

Valerie A Szarek you are such an amazing woman. One compliment would not do you justice, but I will try. I will always remember reading through the book of poetry that you signed years back. You have such a beautiful way with words and with imagery,. You can feel your Spirit come directly off the page. Thank you for  sharing your talent for writing with the world. ((hugs))   Annette MacFarlane

It is always such a joy to take a class with Valerie. She is a master at making one feel comfortable no matter their level of experience. She gracefully weaves writing with soul work and the depths we are able to reach always astounds me. Valerie gives solid writing practice and encourages taking risks. A master teacher does no less. When you are in her hands you feel your words flow. Not only that her sense of humor and delight frames the day leaving one uplifted and ready to continue or begin a serious writing practice as you walk back into your daily life. I am never disappointed being with Valerie and her bag of magic.  Lexanne Leonard

What a wonderful gift to have you in our cast this year! My dad said you and your "word-smithing" were his favorite and he attends every year! XO Ellen Norberg

Melodious artist, I was impressed, and notes still resonate. You are talented, and with your talent, you give back so much! Thank you, Valerie! ....Hard to believe it's going on one year since we released the notes of our song and poetry. Continue to share the love through your music! Truly enjoyable, and a positive piece to our world!!! Thank you!

Valerie A Szarek  your poetry is a powerful alchemical portal, Beloved.  Sabinanda

You have a language and writing skill I'd do anything to have. Kit Hedman, photographer, artist


“Val and her workshops are like no other.  Val is a shaman, Native flute player, hand drummer, poet and lover of words and ideas, of connections and spirits.  She welcomes her writers with warmth and humor, treats us with gentleness and respect, cultivates our uniqueness.    Val's workshops open places I've never been before--whether I'm reflecting on my past or present or leaping into other realms.  As our circle of writers read our writes, the richness deepens and layers, broadens and soars.  Our spoken words weave a nest to hold us all.  It is enchantment.  Carolyn Jennings, journaling guide,

“Thanks, Val, for leading us in a magical space. And thanks to everyone who participated. Your writing ignited me!”

Barbra Cohn

Author of Calmer Waters: The Caregiver's Journey Through Alzheimer's & Dementia

I enjoyed our journey together into the land of our ancestors. I am still working on what I started with all of you.

Many thanks to Valerie for balancing leadership and authorship at the same time. Wow!
Pam P

“It was a wonderful thing to do for myself ~ to set down with this group and let the juices flow.  Thank you all so much for making it a special afternoon.”   Annette P

Life changing, transformational!  Finn Yellow Cloud